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Western TV Series - Your Favorites


MissGoddess
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Below are the western shows I've seen in order of preference. Not that many so far, but I know there are plenty yet to discover. Please share your favorites and discuss! :)

 

1. *The High Chaparral* (1967-1971)

2. *Have Gun, Will Travel* (1957-1963)

3. *Gunsmoke* (1955-1975)

4. *The Rifleman* (1958-1963)

5. *Bonanza* (1959-1973)

6. *Wagon Train* (1957-1965)

7. *Rawhide* (1959-1966)

8. *The Big Valley* (1965-1969)

9. *Lawman* (1958-1962)

10. *Maverick* (1957-1962)

11. *The Virginian* (1962-1971)

12. *Cheyenne* (1955-1963)

13. *Wanted: Dead or Alive* (1958-1961)

14. *Laredo* (1965-1967)

15. *Tales of Wells Fargo* (1957-1962)

 

Edited by: MissGoddess on Feb 28, 2012 3:38 PM

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I'm still working my way through it but *"Have Gun, Will Travel"* probably is my favorite. I've spent a lot of time on Netflix looking at western shows that I was too young to know when they wree popular.

 

Paladin is everything someone wants and maybe should be. He's smart, funny, tough, cool, fair, just, talented, well dressed and very popular with the ladies. Okay, make that everything I wanted to be.

 

Others that rate high now are -

 

Gunsmoke

Rawhide

Cheyenne

Bonanza

Wanted: Dead or Alive

The Guns of Will Sonnet. ( Iwatched this when it was on. I remember I liked it but not sure how it holds up.)

How The West Was Won (James Arness)

Deadwood. (HBO's cuss-fest was well written and tense.)

 

Still making up my mind on "The Restless Gun." I didn't like Henry Fonda's "The Deputy" at all. I've seen bits and pieces of the others save for "Laredo" but not enough to make a call.

 

This should be fun.

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FavWesternTVShows28Feb12.jpg

 

Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok

Adventures of Kit Carson

Lone Ranger

Steve Donovan Western Marshal

Annie Oakley

Tales of Wells Fargo

26 Men

Stories of the Century

Cisco Kid

 

Edited by: Stagecoach1 on Feb 28, 2012 8:54 PM

 

Edited by: Stagecoach1 on Feb 28, 2012 9:07 PM

 

Edited by: Stagecoach1 on Feb 28, 2012 9:14 PM

 

Edited by: Stagecoach1 on Feb 28, 2012 10:07 PM

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{font:Times New Roman} {font}{font:Times New Roman}Movieman: If you can get MeTV, *Will Sonnett* is on Saturday morning or just at noon. {font}

 

 

{font:Times New Roman} {font}{font:Times New Roman} {font}{font:Times New Roman}Terrence1: I agree with you about *The Big Valley*. It was far superior to *Bonanza* even if it didn’t last as long. It’s also on MeTV during the week and I catch it when I can. You really believed these people were a family. {font}

 

 

{font:Times New Roman} {font}{font:Times New Roman}Stagecoach: Anybody who likes *26 Men* and *Stories of the Century*, as well as remembers *Steve Donovan *is okay with me. I’m probably going to order the whole *Century* series from Movies Unlimited as soon as I can. I have ten episodes on a disc with some early *Lone Rangers* and want them all. {font}

 

 

{font:Times New Roman} {font}{font:Times New Roman}They have *26 Men* and some *Wells Fargos* available also. I spent one evening checking the catalogue for all the series they had for order and it was like being in a time warp. There were shows I had forgotten or had no idea you’d be able to get. The memories came pouring back. It’s worth the ten bucks just for that.{font}

 

 

{font:Times New Roman} {font}{font:Times New Roman} {font}{font:Times New Roman}The only one of my favorites I didn’t see any of you folks list was *Black Saddle* with Peter Breck and Russell Johnson. This was 1960-61. Yippee, you all! {font}

 

 

{font:Times New Roman} {font}

 

Edited by: wouldbestar on Feb 28, 2012 10:39 PM

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Hey Roy,

 

We share some of the same faves and a few different ones:

 

*Have Gun, Will Travel*

*Deadwood*

*The High Chaparral*

*Gunsmoke* especially the yearly years

*The Rifleman*

*The Virginian*

*Wagon Train*

*Rawhide*

*The Big Valley*

*Maverick*

*Wanted: Dead or Alive*

*Lancer*

*The Sons of Will Sonnett*

*Alias Smith and Jones*

 

and it's a modern day western but my gosh, it's great:

 

*Justified*

 

And for the record, more westerns, both old fashioned and modern, are making their way to the fall season line-up.

 

Dale

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Howdy Dale,

 

All the ones you mentioned that I missed we never missed them either. As far a "Justified" is concerned I have been a die hard fan since the first episode. LOVE IT..I've become a fan of "Hell on Wheels". It took a few shows for me to get into it. Hallmark is coming out with a new one called "Goodnight for Justice" Which might be interesting. Also ABC has something called "Hangtown".

We were huge fans of the "Warner Bros" TV westerns from Cheyenne to Maverick to Sugarfoot to Bronco to Colt .45 and The Alaskans {That one was OK} but I think W.B. cancelled it and bought everyone back in a new series called The Roaring Twenties..

George Montgomery had a short lived series called "Cimarron City co starring Dan Blocker and Audrey Totter. It was up against "Gunsmoke" if I remember correctly and didn't last long.

But as you said there's hope that we'll get some more riding into town....

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Roy,

 

I think Timothy Olyphant of *Justified* was born for westerns, first *Deadwood* and now this one. He and Walter Goggins make up the ying and yang of *Justified*. And Margo Martindale last season as Mags, what a great season!

 

It took a few episodes but I agree with you about *Hell on Wheels*. It is beautifully shot and scored which kept me interested until it found it found its story legs.

 

Dennis Quaid and Michael Chiklis have signed on to *Ralph Lamb* which is written by Nick Pileggi and is about Nevada cowboy turned Las Vegas sheriff Ralph Lamb and dealing with the bright light city and the mob back in the day. For some reason, it's being hawked as a western.

 

But from regular network to cable to premium channels, westerns, rather set in the real west or the modern west, are getting pilot orders in numbers not seen in years.

 

Here's hoping some of them are as good as the ones we loved as well at least trying to be as good as *Justified*.

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Well howdy MissGoddess...and all the ships at sea,

 

The following are my all-time favorite Westerns:

 

# 1---GUNSMOKE....it was created on radio by John Meston and in 1955, he, along with Nornman Macdonnell and Charles Marquis Warren took it to Television. Mr Meston was a really good writer and Burt Kennedy once said...."John Meston could write in his sleep". Mr Meston wrote for the television show for about 11 years and he scripts still stand the test of time. It really boogles my mind as to why John Meston is not in Televisions Hall of Fame. He belongs there.

 

# 2--Wagon Train.....the great Ward Bond with purty good scripts even though Robert Horton was as stiff as a board. The great John Ford, with his Stock Company, directed an episode of the series called ...The Colter Graven Story.

 

# 3--Rawhide....again Charles Marquis Warren. The first 7 years were really good when Eric Fleming was the trail boss. Many of the episodes were excellent including ....THE INCIDENT OF THE SHAMBING MAN where Victor McLaglen portrayed a former prize-fighter and the episode was directed by Vic's son, Andy McLaglen

 

#4--Have Gun-Will Travel....Richard Boone was wonderful in it and it was very literate.

 

#5 Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theater....Luke Short was the inital brains behind it...and there were many good stories about the olde west.

 

All the Best!

 

Ah !.....The THRILL of it ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

lanetemple

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> {quote:title=Terrence1 wrote:}{quote}My all-time favorite would be The Big Valley---a great cast with well- written stories. I have all of the episodes on DVD and the stories hold up quite well. The wonderful Ms. Stanwyck was at her best in this series.

>

 

Hi Terrence...I quite enjoyed TBV when I saw it on The Hallmark Channel a few years ago. I liked Stanwyck of course, and Richard Long made an interesting sibling with Peter Breck. It would be nice to see it again.

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Howdy, MM!

 

> {quote:title=movieman1957 wrote:}{quote}I'm still working my way through it but *"Have Gun, Will Travel"* probably is my favorite.

 

that does surprise me that it's your favorite.

 

> I've spent a lot of time on Netflix looking at western shows that I was too young to know when they wree popular.

>

 

Me, too. Encore and Hallmark were also good at giving me a peek at some I'd never seen, as well as YouTube ("The Gunsmoke Channel" is one I regularly check).

 

> Paladin is everything someone wants and maybe should be. He's smart, funny, tough, cool, fair, just, talented, well dressed and very popular with the ladies. Okay, make that everything I wanted to be.

>

 

Ha! It's a great character, I really enjoy Richard Boone.

 

> Others that rate high now are -

>

> Gunsmoke

> Rawhide

> Cheyenne

> Bonanza

> Wanted: Dead or Alive

> The Guns of Will Sonnet. ( Iwatched this when it was on. I remember I liked it but not sure how it holds up.)

> How The West Was Won (James Arness)

> Deadwood. (HBO's cuss-fest was well written and tense.)

>

 

Of those I've only seen a couple of episodes of "Wanted: Dead or Alive", not really enough to make up my mind about it or Steve McQueen in it. I've never seen "The Guns of Will Sonnet". Was "How The West Was Won" the made-for-TV movie? I'm not a huge fan of the original so I don't know if I could sit through the remake.

 

> Still making up my mind on "The Restless Gun." I didn't like Henry Fonda's "The Deputy" at all. I've seen bits and pieces of the others save for "Laredo" but not enough to make a call.

>

 

I haven't seen any of those. I guess they are available at Netflix?

 

> This should be fun.

 

I didn't realize there was no "catch all" thread for TV shows, and since they make up the bulk of my "westerns" lately, I thought it would be a nice idea. :) Keep them coming.

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> {quote:title=fredbaetz wrote:}{quote}A Few of my all time favorites:

>

> "Trackdown"

> "The Westerner"

> "Stoney Burke"

 

Howdy, Fred!

 

Those three I have yet to see. What makes you like them? At another message board it was a running joke that Stoney Burke was the long lost brother of Olivia de Havilland and Joan Fontaine. :D

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thanks for posting some pictures, Stagecoach!

 

Adventures of Wild Bill Hickok

Adventures of Kit Carson

Lone Ranger

Steve Donovan Western Marshal

Annie Oakley

Tales of Wells Fargo

26 Men

Stories of the Century

Cisco Kid

 

Of those I only have seen "Tales of Wells Fargo" and "The Lone Ranger". Maybe one episode of "Annie Oakley". Wow, it's amazing how many there were. I used to love the Lone Ranger character as a child.

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{font:Times New Roman}*The only one of my favorites I didn’t see any of you folks list was Black Saddle with Peter Breck and Russell Johnson. This was 1960-61.*

 

Hi *wouldbestar*,

 

That's another I've never heard of. Peter Breck sure made the rounds. I keep spotting him in series after series.{font}

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Howdy, lanetemple,

Thanks for your list!

I completely agree about "Gunsmoke". I'm watching enough that I can recognize the cast AND crew names, ha. Kathleen Hite is a name I'm seeing frequently on screenplay credits. Sure there are repeats of idea, but considerably fewer of them than in some much shorter run series I've seen. That John Meston must have had an inexhaustible storehouse of stories in his head!

 

 

>

> # 2--Wagon Train.....the great Ward Bond with purty good scripts even though Robert Horton was as stiff as a board. The great John Ford, with his Stock Company, directed an episode of the series called ...The Colter Graven Story.

>

 

Its debut on Encore gave me a chance to finally watch this series and I have really enjoyed it. Good stories and some GREAT guest stars, including Bette Davis..several times.

 

> # 3--Rawhide....again Charles Marquis Warren. The first 7 years were really good when Eric Fleming was the trail boss. Many of the episodes were excellent including ....THE INCIDENT OF THE SHAMBING MAN where Victor McLaglen portrayed a former prize-fighter and the episode was directed by Vic's son, Andy McLaglen

>

 

Wow, that episode with Vic sounds exactly like one he did for "Have Gun Will Travel", also directed by Andrew. Can't wait to see it!

 

> #4--Have Gun-Will Travel....Richard Boone was wonderful in it and it was very literate.

>

 

I'll say, I've had to look up plenty of references on that show! :D

 

It's also the one series I want most on DVD, but it's sooooo expensive.

 

> #5 Dick Powell's Zane Grey Theater....Luke Short was the inital brains behind it...and there were many good stories about the olde west.

>

 

I recently received several of these on DVD and I am really looking forward to checking them out soon.

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"How The West Was Won" wasn't so much a remake as it was a jumping off point for a series. Arness played a character not unlike Stewart's of Fonda's from the movie but about his and a family's adventures in the west. (I think they were related and the family was on its way west.) I think it also had a title of "The Macahans" but that might have been in reruns.

 

"The Restless Gun" and "The Deputy" are from Netfilx. "Gun" is produced by David Dortort (Bonanza) and by John Payne. The main reason I got "The Deputy" was on Henry Fonda's name with it but he did little more than make a token appearance in the episodes. He was usually on his way out of town to get a prisoner and then you wouldn't see him again.

 

Since "Have Gun" surprised you what were you thinking was my favorite?

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> {quote:title=movieman1957 wrote:}{quote}"How The West Was Won" wasn't so much a remake as it was a jumping off point for a series. Arness played a character not unlike Stewart's of Fonda's from the movie but about his and a family's adventures in the west. (I think they were related and the family was on its way west.) I think it also had a title of "The Macahans" but that might have been in reruns.

>

 

I never knew any of this. I guess it was made after "Gunsmoke"?

 

> "The Restless Gun" and "The Deputy" are from Netfilx. "Gun" is produced by David Dortort (Bonanza) and by John Payne. The main reason I got "The Deputy" was on Henry Fonda's name with it but he did little more than make a token appearance in the episodes. He was usually on his way out of town to get a prisoner and then you wouldn't see him again.

>

 

That John Payne show sounds interesting. He often showed good sense in his movie projects.

 

> Since "Have Gun" surprised you what were you thinking was my favorite?

 

I really don't know!

 

I totally forgot to mention "Bat Masterson" with Gene Barry. It was pretty good, though Gene sometimes comes off a bit the same in every character he plays.

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Howdy, Ro! Thanks for posting those themes...these shows had some of the best music openings in television. So you like the rascally Maverick boys? :D

 

I haven't watched "The Wild, Wild West" since I was a kid, but I used to find it a lot of fun. It was a unique blend of spy thrills that were so trendy in the '60s, and western style. I remember I loved the cartoon intro.

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Miss G..

+These were three well done westerns.

 

"Stoney Burke" only ran one season,sadly. I found Jack Lord a little more likeable then his Steve McGarret role on "Hawaii 5-0". Stoney's goal was to win the Gold Buckle for the Saddle Bronc Champion Ship' The scripts were above average as was the direction and his co stars were Warren Oats and Bruce Dern, which didn't hurt..

Not sure about the Stoney, Joan and Olivia connection...

 

"The Westerner"starring one of my favorite actors Brian Kieth. He play Dave Blassingame a loner with his big dog "Brown", who was the star of"Old Yeller". The series was created by Sam Peckinpah and was a spin off from "The Zane Grey Theater" .The series was well received by critics and had good scripts and acting, but just didn't find an audience.It only ran for 13 episodes. One episode titled "Line Camp" was written and directed by Tom Gries and was the basis for his Western "Will Penny" with Charlton Heston.

 

"Trackdown" was another Western that was a spin off of "The Zane Grey Theater" and starred Robert Culp. He played an ex gunfighter turned Texas Ranger Another oater that boasted better then average scripts and acting. Culp played it "cool' and was very likeable as Hoby Gilman. This series ran for two seasons and also created a spin ff called "Wanted. Dead or Alive" Steve McQueen guested as Josh Randell a bounty hunter in a couple of episodes and the rest as they say...well, you know what they say..

 

If you get a chance to watch any of these long ago series I think you'll enjoy them...

 

Edited by: fredbaetz on Feb 29, 2012 8:54 PM

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> {quote:title=fredbaetz wrote:}{quote}Miss G..

> +These were three well done westerns.

>

 

You make me long to see them now!

 

> "Stoney Burke" only ran one season,sadly. I found Jack Lord a little more likeable then his Steve McGarret role on "Hawaii 5-0". Stoney's goal was to win the Gold Buckle for the Saddle Bronc Champion Ship' The scripts were above average as was the direction and his co stars were Warren Oats and Bruce Dern, which didn't hurt..

 

Wow! Jack Lord as a rodeo cowboy? Does he do any of the events himself? I had no idea he had it in him.

 

> Not sure about the Stoney, Joan and Olivia connection...

>

 

Ha! I always wondered myself what the joke was about.

 

>

> "The Westerner"starring one of my favorite actors Brian Kieth. He play Dave Blassingame a loner with his big dog "Brown", who was the star of"Old Yeller". The series was created by Sam Peckinpah and was a spin off from "The Zane Grey Theater" .The series was well received by critics and had good scripts and acting, but just didn't find an audience.It only ran for 13 episodes. One episode titled "Line Camp" was written and directed by Tom Gries and was the basis for his Western "Will Penny" with Charlton Heston.

>

 

Oh now this one really sounds up my alley. I love Brian Keith and the credentials couldn't be better.

 

>

> "Trackdown" was another Western that was a spin off of "The Zane Grey Theater" and starred Robert Culp. He played an ex gunfighter turned Texas Ranger Another oater that boasted better then average scripts and acting. Culp played it "cool' and was very likeable as Hoby Gilman. This series ran for two seasons and also created a spin ff called "Wanted. Dead or Alive" Steve McQueen guested as Josh Randell a bounty hunter in a couple of episodes and the rest as they say...well, you know what they say..

>

 

Another great case you make for a series I never heard of. I've only seen Culp in "I Spy" and guesting on a few western shows.

 

I'm going to make a point to "trackdown" these shows, thanks, Fred! :)

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Wouldbestar, you and I share the same sentiments about our favorite Western. I loved Bonanza, but The Big Valley was far superior. Those actors made us feel that there really was a

Barkley family. Sadly, Peter Breck died just last week. He had moved to Canada some years ago, and became an acting teacher. And Miss Goddess, thanks for your input about this show. There were so many wonderful stories on this show and, perhaps because of Ms. Stanwyck, many of her friends from the Golden Years of Hollywood appeared as guests in many of the episodes. So, it apears that the three of us really have something in common!

 

Terrence.

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Roy,

 

It's been almost 30 years since I've seen episodes of *The Westerner* (thanks to a salute to Sam that we did in college) but I agree, it was a terrific western!! It's a role Brian Keith was born for!

 

Chris,

 

Thanks for the reminder about the series, *How the West Was Won*. It gave James Arness the chance to prove that a) he was a good actor and B) he could be more than Matt Dillion.

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